WESTPORT — A new practitioner-assisted stretch studio in town looks to relieve residents of stress.

On Monday, Stretch Zone opened its first Connecticut studio in Westport.

Founded in 2004, the business is one of the largest practitioner-assisted stretching franchises in the country. Kyle Hargett, owner of the Westport studio, said after spending years in finance he decided to make a career shift.

His own personal experience with Stretch Zone would lead to his interest in the franchise.

“After experiencing Stretch Zone on a Florida vacation and speaking to the local owner, I knew that the concept and methodology was something special,” said Hargett, a Ridgefield resident.

At Stretch Zone, staff focus on a scientific approach to stretching, he said. The studio also owns patented equipment to properly position, stablize, isolate and manipulate muscles in a scientific way.

At the studio, they hope to increase customers’ active range of motion and the quality of those movements, Hargett said.

“We are extremely excited to be bringing the lasting benefits of stretch to the community here in Westport,” he said.

Tony Zaccario, vice president of operations of the Ft. Lauderdale-based business, said the Westport studio is the 68th Stretch Zone studio in the country. The business is now open Monday through Sunday 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. The first visit is free for any new Stretch Zone customer.

Sean Yeslow, master practitioner, said staff put together specific and unique stretches for their clients.

“It’s geared toward what their specific goal is,” he said. “It’s amazing the amount of stretches we can do.”

Yeslow explained stretching was an important stepping stone for people coming out of physical therapy or interested in fitness.

“It helps you feel better overall,” he said. “If you don’t feel good doing something, you won’t continue doing it”

Yeslow said people who try to work out before they have range of motion often don’t stick with it too long because they don’t feel good doing it.

“This is very important,” he said of stretching.

First Selectman Jim said he was thrilled for the business to open in town.

“This is exactly the kind of business that more and more Westporters would like to be a part of,” he said. “Streching, being in good-shape and fitness are in Westporters’ DNA.”